13th Age Character Builds: Easy Crit Ranger

The ranger is one of the simplest classes to build and play, but your choices of talents will determine what kind of ranger you are. Rangers can vary from animal-companion assisted trackers, deadly archers, to frighteningly efficient melee characters.

The ranger is a simple class, nothing flashy. Basic attacks, modified with expanding crit ranges or increasing the number of attacks possible. The first build focuses on multiple attacks, the second here on expanded crit ranges.

A third build possible involves magic (fey queen’s enchantments and ranger ex cathedra), animal companions, and ranger’s pets. This has the ranger as a magic user who supports their animal companion with spells. I’ve seen such builds work very well in the past, with a panther as the front line fighter and the ranger staying in cover and picking off enemies that try to hurt the beast.

Ranger talent clarifications

You should note two important things about the ranger’s talents. The first is that the ranger’s animal companion talent is superseded by the druid’s version found in 13 True Ways. If you only have the core book don’t worry about it, if you have both books use the updated version of the talent.

The second note about talents is a tiny wrinkle in favored enemy. Favored enemy lets us pick a race type (aberration, beast, construct, dragon, etc…) against which our attacks have an expanded crit range. Picking the humanoid type as your favored enemy is worth two talent slots instead of just one. The wrinkle comes in the adventurer-tier feat which lets us switch favored enemies during a full heal-up. What happens if you spend two talents on favored enemy to get humanoid but then switch to a non-humanoid favored enemy? The answer is that if you spend two talent slots and a feat you can get humanoid as your favored enemy and switch to two non-humanoid monster types simultaneously (dragon and ooze, beast and plant, devil and demon, etc).

Easy-crit ranger

Download the Easy Crit Ranger character sheets here.

This ranger build is focused on tracking down enemies and ending them, with a crit range that can be as low as 10+, and dealing triple damage!

This tough little ranger doesn’t care what they fight with—they are equally at home with a bow or with a two-handed great-axe. No subtlety here—just devastatingly accurate attacks.

Tactics with this ranger involve looking for ways to maximize the expanded crit rang—marking favored enemies and first striking them. Keep in mind how and when the crit range expands for this ranger; critting over 50% of the time, if the right confluence of factors comes into play, rocks—the key with this character is hitting the right enemies at the right time to get the maximum crit range possible.

Talents

First Strike

Expanded crit range with opening attacks.

Lethal Hunter

Mark enemies to gain an expanded crit range.

Favored Enemy

Pick a creature type that you have an expanded crit range against. The adventurer feat lets the creature type picked to be changed, and spending a second talent lets us pick ‘humanoid’ as a monster type.

Race

The halfling’s evasive and small racial powers gives this ranger extra survivability in combat.

Attributes

For this ranger, Strength is vital for our melee attacks, with Dexterity needed for ranged attacks and Constitution for much-needed hit points.

1st level

Attributes: Str 17 (+3) Con 17 (+3) Dex 15 (+2) Int 10 (0) Wis 10 (0) Cha 8 (-1)

Racial Powers: evasive, small

Talents: first strike, lethal hunter, favored enemy

Feats: favored enemy

2nd level

New feat (lethal hunter).

3rd level

New feat (first strike).

4th level

+1 to three attributes (Strength, Constitution, Dexterity), new feat (toughness).

5th level

New talent (favored enemy), new feat (favored enemy).

6th level

New feat (lethal hunter).

7th level

+1 to three attributes (Strength, Constitution, Dexterity), new feat (first strike).

8th level

New talent (archery), new feat (archery).

9th level

New feat (lethal hunter).

10th level

+1 to three attributes (Strength, Constitution, Dexterity), new feat (first strike).

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